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Seriously, I understand the cashiers thought process and I have no problem with it. It's just very rare that someone does or says something that leaves me speechless and this was one of those rare times.
tldr: Cashier does not want to ring me up because there are other customers in other lines at other registers who have been waiting longer than me.
ETA: I think I must be pretty bad at describing this set-up. When you approach the two fast lane registers there is a line at each one. You look at how many people are in each line, how many items the people have, how fast the lines are moving and decide which of the two lines you want to get in. The only reason there was not a line at one of the registers on this particular occasion was because the register with no line was changing cashiers.
I expected this may not be as weird as it seemed to me and I might get a bunch of people saying this doesn't really reach WTF status...I really didn't expect to start getting comments telling me how the store I go to is set up but I guess if more than one person is coming away with that impression then it must be because I didn't describe it well enough.